"Ask Vic" will publish on Monday, Wednesday and Friday during the football season.
Lori from Brookfield, WI
Vic, what did the Packers' win yesterday reveal to you about the team and its leadership?
It didn't reveal anything to me because I don't think one game can do that when a team is in the midst of looking for a head coach. The Packers won in the cold at home against a dome team playing out the string. The Packers played well. That's what I got from yesterday's game. I'm not going to feel a sense of real meaning until I know who the next head coach is. Until then, I can't help but feel a sense of uncertainty.
David from Milwaukee, WI
Vic, do you think the Browns will win 10 games next season?
The Browns will be my pick to win the AFC North next season. All of the high picks have finally put the Browns on the right path. I watched yesterday's game and I was greatly impressed by Baker Mayfield. Coming out of college, I wasn't sure he had the arm strength to throw outside the numbers. I do now.
Daniel from Cedar Rapids, IA
Thoughts on the first game of the Philbin era? How many games does he need to win to become the next head coach?
Philbin era? Really? You're ready to refer to an interim head coach as an era? I think you're grossly over-reacting to the euphoria of winning a football game against a bad football team. Joe Philbin is a good football coach, but I think the Packers fan base would react with outrage if he was summarily named the team's next head coach based on a few wins late in a lost season. We'd be right back on the fire-the-coach train the first time the Packers lost next season. I think we all need to calm down and prepare for major change.
Justin from Titonka, IA
What did we learn about the Packers?
We learned they have fans who are really desperate to learn something.
Eric from Hudson, WI
Vic, I don’t think the Packers quit on Mike McCarthy but, after watching yesterday’s game, I certainly believe Aaron Rodgers did. He certainly seemed to be engaged.
I don't want to believe what you're suggesting is true, but I acknowledge Rodgers had a different look about him. He was joyful looking. I'm going to believe his joy was the product of victory, not mutiny.
Jerry from Savannah, GA
Vic, do you think Winston Moss hurt his chances of finding a job with his poor appearance on FOX’s pregame show?
I wish, for his sake, he hadn't done it. I'm not afraid of the truth and I think it's cathartic for all of us that someone with his inside knowledge should share that information with us, but I don't think he helped himself with his expose. A wise man once told me, "Take the high road." Mike McCarthy took the high road. The high road will take you where you want to go.
Dustin from North Port, FL
What do you think of an organization that chooses to add artificial noise (the siren)?
The siren or the train whistle and the PA guy screaming, "It's thirrrrrrd downnnnn!" make me laugh. The NFL treats fans like sheep, but the flock seems to enjoy it. Baaaa!
Mike from Charlotte, NC
Vic, how does a man like McCarthy lose his locker room? Where does a mutiny like the one we apparently saw this year begin? I highly doubt today's plays were any different than last week's plays.
I really, really hope you're wrong about this having been a mutiny. Maybe that's what we're going to learn from what's left of this season. I can accept losing. I will not accept mutiny.
Steve from Lake Stevens, WA
Do you have any thoughts or knowledge as to why things didn't work out for Joe Philbin in Miami?
The Richie Incognito situation made it nearly impossible for Philbin to keep his job.
George from Melon, WI
Vic, if the Packers continue to win games, would it be a no-brainer to hold onto Philbin/Pettine for next season?
As coordinators? I've never known a new coach to retain both coordinators. Again, I think we need to prepare ourselves for major change.
Jason from Austin, TX
You mentioned Jeff Fisher was the coach when Aaron Donald was drafted, but how much of an impact does a coach have on a team's draft board? Maybe it's different for every team, but I would imagine the bulk of the draft board is put together by the scouting department and the GM, especially if you're drafting the best available player.
It's common for the GM to seek the head coach's opinion on a prospect. It's common for the head coach to do film study on the player, and for the head coach to give his opinion on the player's talent, technique and readiness to play in the NFL. It's also common for the coordinator and position coach to study the player and provide their opinions. Also, the GM and head coach would likely meet with the player in an interview session at the combine. The coach has to cook the dinner, and he's usually allowed to make some shopping suggestions.
Karl from Albuquerque, NM
Vic, what do you think about a college player who decides not to play with his team in their bowl game so he can prepare for the draft?
Bowl games are meaningless. I don't blame these guys for not playing in them. College football needs a makeover. I see empty seats at most games I watch. Before the season began, I read a story about declining student attendance at college football games, and I saw strong examples of that this season. I was stunned to see large expanses of empty seats at the South Carolina-Florida game. The Gators? The Swamp? Attendance at bowl games is embarrassing, but it's the TV ratings that speak the loudest. The ratings for college football are horrible. We're heading into another playoffs with teams from states that won't drive TV ratings. Alabama, Clemson and Oklahoma aren't going to turn on TVs in New York and California, and Notre Dame isn't the ratings powerhouse it once was. College football is living off its past.
Joe from Bloomington, IN
The running back stiff arm doesn’t need a rule change. Defense just needs to stop being nice. Grab the extended, vulnerable hand, do a quick torso torque to make the tackle and the accompanying limb dislocations and bone breaks will discourage repetition.
Or the rule could be changed.
John from Austin, TX
You seem to have a very favorable opinion of Jeff Fisher, while he is typically considered to have been a mediocre-at-best head coach by most pundits. Are there any bad head coaches at the NFL level? Who would you currently consider to be the worst head coach? Who do you think is the most overrated head coach?
Those who witnessed Fisher guide the Oilers/Titans through relocation from Houston to Memphis to Nashville have high regard for him. His team played in three cities and called four stadiums home from 1996-99. He oversaw a roster rebuild during that time, and developed Steve McNair from a small-college product to one of the NFL's premier quarterbacks. If Super Bowl XXXIV had lasted one more play, I believe the Titans would've won the game. Fisher kept the Titans on top for a full cycle, before age and attrition demanded a rebuild, and then Vince Young was forced on Fisher. He didn't want him. Fisher is too good an evaluator of talent to have wanted Young. Bud Adams was in love with Young because he led Texas to the national title, and that was the beginning of the end for Fisher and the Titans. The Rams represented another relocation assignment. Fisher oversaw construction of a roster that now includes Donald, Gurley and Goff. If Goff had come first, I think Fisher would still be the Rams' coach. I respect Fisher for the focused and physical brand of football I watched his Titans teams play when I covered the Jaguars. That's my historical perspective. I was there. I have an appreciation for what Fisher achieved in putting the Titans franchise on the football map.
Marcus from Seattle, WA
Vic, I've been wondering: How did you first publicize this site to capture enough questioners to get it started? I heard about it well after its first column.
I wrote a hello column one day and word of mouth provided a growing base of readers. We reached 15,430 unique visitors and 42,376 page views on Saturday, numbers that make me feel happy for the community this column has built through the years. I do this because I like to read and write. This is for fun and I'm happy to know so many people are engaged.
Scott from Lincoln City, OR
Vic, assuming Winston Moss and the si.com story paint an accurate picture, what does one do to hold Aaron Rodgers accountable? Is it even possible?
Accountability shouldn't be the goal. Cooperation is the goal. The new coach should be a person capable of bonding with Rodgers. Rodgers is "The Man." He's holding the Packers hostage with his talent and with his contract. Those are undeniable facts. The goal is to find a coach who can get the most out of what Rodgers has left in his career.